The Microsoft Developer Network (MSDN) is a subscription based offering for all commercial and consumer products that Microsoft offers. The subscription is Per User. MSDN can be a very cost effective way to secure licensing for your development and test environments. So, rather than licensing Windows Server or SQL Server or SharePoint Server plus all of those requisite CALs, each person with an MSDN license may install and use that software on any number of devices to design, develop, test and/or demonstrate their programs. They can also be used in those environments for diagnostic issues, for example, to debug programs once they’ve been deployed into production.
Microsoft licensing rules require that each person who uses the software created within that MSDN environment must also have a license. To clarify – the tester of an application, which resides in an environment in which a licensed MSDN developer has created an application, must also be licensed with an MSDN subscription. Microsoft insists that if the non-licensees are using these servers then these servers must be fully licensed. A solution we have come up with for this problem is to isolate the two environments to be a MSDN environment and a non-MSDN environment.